Great Max seems to have won a last minute ticket to Royal Ascot after making his winning debut for Michael Bell in Betfair Racing… Only Bettor Podcast Novice Stakes in Newbury.
A 260,000 guinea year-old buy for owners of Amo Racing Limited, colt Wootton Bassett was a 4-1 shot for his introduction to the racetrack over six and a half stadiums in Berkshire.
Having been prominently ridden throughout, Jack Mitchell’s mount displayed a smart shift to get up and beat the wayward three-quarter-length Harrow – setting up a planned tilt at the Chesham Stakes on Saturday week.
Winning coach Michael Bell said: “He’s doing well at home and we were hoping he could do something like that.
“As long as he takes the race well, eats and trains well next week, he’ll be racing in Chesham.
“There weren’t many suitable young girls to meet him, but we had this plan in mind for some time.
“The first phase went as planned, so if all goes well for the next week we will head to Ascot.”
Sylvester Kirk admitted relief was his overriding emotion after Seattle Rock (5-2) took advantage of his lowered eyesight in the Premier League Novice Stakes of Betfair’s British EBF Fillies.
The Fastnet Rock daughter was placed in the Chesham at Ascot, Sweet Solera at Newmarket and Prestige Stakes at Goodwood as a juvenile last season.
Having also undergone two demanding tests this spring – finishing the field in the Nell Gwyn and the 1000 Guineas in Newmarket – Seattle Rock had a lot less on its plate in Newbury and duly opened its account with a two length verdict under Ryan Moore.
“Relief is the key,” Kirk said.
“You always worry when you take a filly that has been very proven with decent form and a reasonable grade in a maiden or a novice, so that’s the way she did it.
“It’s especially good that she did it over a mile because her form is obviously better than shorter.”
He added, “It’ll be interesting to see how the handicapper assesses form. Ryan was reasonably complimentary about him, so we’ll sit down with Jeff (Smith, owner) and come up with a plan from here on out.
“She already has a handsome black guy and it’s good to take the young girl label off him.”
The second division was a much tighter race affair, with Evident Beauty and Tom Marquand coached by William Haggas gaining the upper hand over compatriot Subtle Beauty, 5-2 favorite, by a neck.